Since 1958 the Junior Staff program of Earthplace has been involving junior high and high school-aged children in in-depth natural history, natural resource conservation and community service projects. Each year the program focuses on a different theme - reptiles, birds, mammals, insects and other invertebrates, plants, geology, physical geography and astronomy, and water.
In this positive youth development program Junior Staffers enjoy an enhanced educational experience working with naturalists and scientists. As a supplement to the school science curriculum, the Junior Staff program provides a solid base in the natural sciences through interactive classroom learning and hands-on experimentation. Support of the Earthplace mission through on-site community service projects is also a significant part of the Junior Staff experience.
Participation in the Junior Staff program is dependent upon an application and interview process. Once accepted, Junior Staffers meet two Saturdays a month from September through May, 10:00am-2:00pm.
The program is $500 per semester.
JS Juniors (grades 6-8): January 11, 25 February 8, 15 March 8, 15 April 5, 12 May 10, 17
JS Seniors (grades 9-12): January 4, 25 February 1, 15 March 1, 15 April 5, 26 and May 3, 17
The Junior Staff meet 10 AM to 2 PM throughout the school year, except for holidays. Each Saturday there is a short organizational meeting, a lecture/lab session and a work project. The lecture/lab session changes every week and can include microscope work, field projects, research, guest lecturers, anatomy and physiology with dissections, conservation issues, debates and keeping a nature journal. A select number of interested children will also have the opportunity to learn about and help take care of some of the Earthplace animals. The work projects could be Earthplace trail maintenance, museum exhibit creation, program presentations, gardening or outside community service projects. The Junior Staff also helps with Earthplace fundraisers and special events. Occasional field trips are offered.
Earthplace offers the Junior Staff career counseling and opportunities to develop work skills. Many of these children have participated and worked in our summer camp, children’s workshops or water-quality monitoring laboratory.
There are two adult leaders with backgrounds in environmental science and education. The program is for those with a strong interest in biology, natural history and ecology. Many of the participants have been with Earthplace for many years and believe strongly in the Earthplace mission to learn about the natural world and actively work to protect it.
If you have any questions or are interested in enrolling your child in the program, please contact Becky Newman (203) 227-7253 x 107 or firstname.lastname@example.org.